December 2016 – Dick Taylor, Starchild, Map Chocolate & Lillie Belle Farms

Featured Chocolate Makers

We are pleased to showcase bean to bar chocolate from Dick Taylor, Starchild, Map Chocolate, and Lillie Belle Farms.

Dick Taylor

Dick Taylor (USA) Fleur de Sal 70% is a savory bar that pairs salt with a floral citrus cacao from Guatemala. At 70% the immediate taste of fruit is quickly followed by a smooth dark espresso chocolate. The salt intensifies the finish making this a wonderful bar to enjoy slowly. The trinitario cacao from Guatemala has notes of plumeria, blackberry, peach cobbler and espresso. Aside from the addition of salt, this bar is only made with 2 ingredients.

Starchild (USA) Tanzania Kokoa Kamili 70% is made from beans grown in an organic manner on small farms throughout the lush regions of the Kilombero Valley. Long time subscribers may remember that we’ve featured this particular delicious Tanzanian bean twice before made by other makers. This chocolate is gently hand crafted in small micro batches to preserve the natural flavor. I was most surprised by how clean the bar tasted even with the use of alternative sugar, in this case coconut sugar. Starchild’s bars are one of the few and rare brands we’ve selected for our No Cane Sugar selection at our store. This bar has predominantly fruity notes with a soft chocolate backbone. This bar took a Silver at the International Chocolate Awards.

map chocolate

Map Chocolate (USA) I Dream of Fiji 78% is a single origin bar from Fiji cacao. Fiji is a very “chocolate-y” chocolate, but not earthy in the way of an Ecuador, or malty like a Dominican. At 78% it has a surprising sweetness, so for anyone afraid of dark chocolate, this is a bar to introduce them to. We originally wanted to feature another bar by Map (they are all so lovely), but the maker encouraged us to feature this favorite of hers because of how well balanced and unique this micro-lot cacao is. We predict that we’ll see more makers jump on this wonderful bean and a new influx of Fijian chocolate.

Lillie Belle Farms (USA) Nicaragua 68% is the one, or rather, “The Other One.” The cocoa beans for this chocolate come from a good friend of the makers, and cacao grower, in Nicaragua. Carefully grown, meticulously harvested, and roasted to perfection. The chocolate is roasted with loving care for many days until it reaches its peak of flavor. This chocolate is just plain great.

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